1922: The Birth of Modernism

1922: The Birth of Modernism

Kevin Jackson / Sep 19, 2019

The Birth of Modernism For a literary historian of the twenty first century the year is unquestionably the annus mirabilis of modernism The greatest English language novel of the century was published in February

  • Title: 1922: The Birth of Modernism
  • Author: Kevin Jackson
  • ISBN: 9781605981208
  • Page: 336
  • Format: Hardcover
  • For a literary historian of the twenty first century, the year 1922 is unquestionably the annus mirabilis of modernism The greatest English language novel of the century was published in February 1922 Ulysses by James Joyce The greatest English language poem of the century, The Waste Land by T S eliot, was published in October These two titles have come to dominate oFor a literary historian of the twenty first century, the year 1922 is unquestionably the annus mirabilis of modernism The greatest English language novel of the century was published in February 1922 Ulysses by James Joyce The greatest English language poem of the century, The Waste Land by T S eliot, was published in October These two titles have come to dominate our sense of what modernism in literature means nothing published in the decades since has even begun to challenge their preeminence In the year 1922, it now seems, literature changed forever.Then there were all the Americans in pairs the Lost Generation, as Gertrude Stein called them Hemingway moved there in early 1922, a time immortalized in A Moveable Feast A heady time, but also a time for mourning Perhaps the greatest of the native Parisians, Marcel Proust, published the last volume of his epic novel Sodom et Gomorrah and died very shortly afterwards, in November 1922.A small coterie of poets was hatching an entirely new sensibility The name for this way of thinking, Surrealisme, had been coined by a slightly older poet, Guillaume Apollinaire it is in 1922 that F Scott Fitzgerald coins the term the Jazz Age, for a collection of short stories He also publishes The Beautiful and Damned In reality, the new sound of jazz, however exciting, is in no than a transitional stage from its disregarded bordello roots to its status as a full grown art form But 1922 is full of early promise and growth Louis Armstrong makes his way north to Chicago Bessie Smith records her first song The year ends almost exactly with the formation of the USSR on December 30 A new world order is in place.

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    About "Kevin Jackson"

      • Kevin Jackson

        There is than one author with this name in the database.Kevin Jackson s childhood ambition was to be a vampire but instead he became the last living polymath His colossal expertise ranges from Seneca to Sugababes, with a special interest in the occult, Ruskin, take away food, Dante s Inferno and the moose He is the author of numerous books on numerous subjects, including Fast Feasting on the Streets of London Portobello 2006 , and reviews regularly for the Sunday Times.From portobellobooks 3014 KevinKevin Jackson is an English writer, broadcaster and filmmaker.He was educated at Pembroke College, Cambridge After teaching in the English Department of Vanderbilt University, Nashville, he joined the BBC, first as a producer in radio and then as a director of short documentaries for television In 1987 he was recruited to the Arts pages of The Independent He has been a freelance writer since the early 1990s and is now a regular contributor to BBC radio programmes.Jackson often collaborates on projects in various media with, among others, the film maker Kevin Macdonald, with the cartoonist Hunt Emerson, with the musician and composer Colin Minchin with whom he wrote lyrics for the rock opera Bite and with the songwriter Peter Blegvad.Jackson appears, under his own name, as a semi fictional character in Iain Sinclair s account of a pedestrian journey around the M25, London Orbital.Adapted from


    700 Comments

    1. An exhausting and entertaining précis of the cultural, political, and scientific explosions that took place in 1922. Focusing on the twin peaks of modernism—The Waste Land and Ulysses—Jackson’s brilliant book captures the foreboding and excitement of that monumental time when timeless art was oozing from copious orifices, and the Ungreat Dictators were in the process of wiping out half the universe. His summaries are learned and well-informed—all topics are uncaptured with the essence o [...]


    2. Another book about a year, this one focused on writers -- primarily Joyce, Eliot, and Pound -- with side trips into art, politics, psychiatry, film, music, and other fields. Having recently read Florian Illies' book on 1913, comparisons are inevitable and I generally preferred Illies' writing and the more integrated structure of his history. 1922 is more a series of factoids and sometimes-digressive footnotes somewhat arbitrarily assembled around the central story of three remarkable writers in [...]


    3. Constellation of Genius is one of those brilliantly simple ideas that seem so obvious once someone else has come up with it: it's an almanac of the peak year of Modernism, 1922, the year of The Waste Land and Ulysses. The year is reported chronologically, arranged in twelve (obviously) chapters, with an introductory scene-setting account of the state of play at the start of the year, and a fascinating 'Aftermath' section which deals with the post-1922 careers of the main players, and many of the [...]


    4. A very rapid pastiche of (mostly) literary gossip. Some interesting anecdotes, but not a terribly weighty or important book.


    5. Writing a review to clarify that this is more of a 2.5 star book for me. This book is a day-by-day chronicle of prominent thinkers, artists, and public figures of 1922, but that's really about it. Kevin Jackson claims that 1922 represents the birth of Modernism, because the year begins with publication of James Joyce's Ulysses and ends with T.S. Eliot's publishing The Waste Land. Ezra Pound advocated for re-starting the official calendar with the publication of Ulysses, and dated his letters as [...]


    6. See other reviews. A worthy topic, but this is a smart marketing opportunity rather than a book with any kind of argument. Well researched, no doubt, and nevertheless fascinating for people like myself obsessed with the birth of Modernism. But, anyone with a university library card and a account could make this happen, so I'm willing only to recommend it as a bargain sale for dipping into, rather than as a contribution to literature on the era.




    7. Got this on a whim, and it's just about what I thought it would be: a gossipy little diary about the goings-on of (mostly) the expat set in 1922. It reminds me a bit of the Warhol diaries, in fact. And it's fun enough, showing the doings of characters in the early jazz age. And there were a lot of characters there. The book points out that the year was bookended by *Ulysses* and *The Waste Land*, and Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Fritz Lang, Alfred Hitchcock, Salvador Dali, and Mussolini all make appea [...]


    8. Argh. This book was not at all what I expected it to be. Having enjoyed Bill Bryson’s One Summer, I did not necessarily expect a book written in a “this day in history” format, presenting what happened day after day in Paris, London, Moscow, and anywhere D.H. Lawrence travelled. Instead of organised material, we get, quite literally, a collection of trivia. Did I really need to know that Eliot reportedly used "violet face powder to make himself look more cadaverous"? How about D.H Lawrence [...]


    9. An awful lot happened in 1922 in the world of art, literature, politics, film, international relations - the world in general. So much so, that a book such as the 'Constellation of Genius' is needed to track the daily highlights from this wonderful year. Structured as an almanac recounting the major events on a day by day basis, 'Constellation of Genius' really helped me appreciate how remarkable this year was. 1922 saw the publication of the two fundamental landmarks of Modernism - Ulysess and [...]


    10. This is a great book to get caught up in. As its subtitle indicates it is essentially about the beginnings of the Modernist era, given as the year that Joyce's 'Ulysses' was published, but also 1922 was the year that Eliot's 'The Waste Land' appeared. The book is divided into the 12 months as chapters, then the significant events are discussed chronologically, flitting around the world, introducing the major players of the time, whether they be writers, artists, composers, filmmakers or politici [...]


    11. This has a simple thesis; that Modernism was formed and furnished with its twin leading literary landmarks of Ulysses and The Waste Lands in 1922, and that everything else was framed with reference to an event that took place this year. The year is laid out for us to consume, event by event, letter by gossipy letter, historical details related in chronological order, with a simplicity that allows the world it describes to speak for itself. Easy and straightforward, Kevin Jackson illustrates his [...]


    12. Jackson has created an immersive day by day account of Western European life in 1922, arranged like an omniscient journal of the year's political and cultural luminaries. Jackson bases his selection of 1922 as the pivotal year in the creation of modernism on the publication of The Waste Land and Ulysses, and the concurrent genius of TS Eliot and James Joyce, and their prophet-cum-booster Ezra Pound. It is a brilliant format, bursting with profound quotations, transcendent moments, tawdry quarrel [...]


    13. I'm giving up on this book for now. It includes a wealth of information about major and many many minor cultural figures, mostly in Western Europe and America, in the year 1922. But, the vignette structure and large number of characters makes it hard to follow any particular narrative thread. This might be a fun read for someone who already knows a bunch of the personalities and the general cultural history of the year; without that background, I've found this a hard slog with nothing to stick t [...]


    14. Oh dear. I should have read the blurb. This wasn't a book about modernism, it was a chronological gossip column from 1922, mainly taken from the diaries and letters of the celebrities of the day. I really disliked it.I'm just not interested in Joyce's arguments with his publisher, Eliot's boring job in the Bank of England and Maynard Keynes's sex life. I also don't need to be reminded what a nasty person Bertrand Russell was.(Side note; it's never a good sign when the footnotes seem to take up m [...]


    15. This 2013 book is an almanac calendar of the annus mirabilis 1922.Many important events happened in historical, cultural, and scientificareas. It is an exciting compilation of the highlights of that year.The Wasteland and Ulysses were both published; the BBC was founded;Mussolini, Stalin, and Hitler were on the rise much to the world'schagrin. The first Disney animation was produced and Albert Einsteinwas awarded the Nobel in Physics. It is a fascinating excursion throughhistory.


    16. Better than it looks. History is chopped into bite size bits, but there is coherence and insight underlying it.Too much hero-worship and some very dubious politics -- it seems the fascists aren't so bad, but all the communists are -- but ignoring that he gives a fine if necessarily shallow sweep of an era seen from the bastions of art and literature.


    17. Want to know how Modernism started? Of course you do! Read this book it will tell you all you want to know about Modernism year 1, and do it in a way that doesn't make you want to throw it across the room. The only thing I didn't like was that they kept referring back to Joyce and Eliot whose lives in 1922 went that exciting to read about.


    18. I loved this book. It's a day by day account of 1922, the year in which both The Waste Land and Ulysses were published. It tracks the movements of a large cast of characters not just from the literary world (Eliot, Joyce, Woolf) but from music, film, politics, Art, Dance, architecture. Great to read and full of interesting pieces of info.


    19. A fascinating month by month account of literary events of 1922, the year The Wasteland and Ulysses were published, and Proust died. Readable as well as scholarly. Particularly interesting is tracking the critical reaction to Ulysses, hailed by some as genius, condemned by others as obscene and blasphemous, greeted with utter puzzlement by the rest.


    20. A calendar of the year 1922, which is bookended with the publications of Joyce's Ulysses and Eliot's The Wasteland. The author also talks about historical, cultural, scientific, and other innovations that came along during that year, but this has a very literary focus. Super interesting!



    21. Actually gave up on this not my type of book at all, thought it was going to be more of an in twined story but wasn't.



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